By Jeff Brady
If you work for Penn State and don’t agree to step on a scale or have your waist measured, it could soon cost you $100 a month. The Pennsylvania State University is joining a growing list of employers penalizing workers who want company-sponsored health benefits but refuse to participate in health improvement programs.
University officials say they need to take dramatic steps to reduce health care costs, and getting their workers in shape is one way to do it.
Penn State expects to spend $217 million this year for its health plan, which covers about 40,000 individuals (employees and their family members). Vice President for Human Resources Susan Basso says costs were projected to rise 14 percent next year. She hopes to reduce that to a 5 percent rise through a that will go into effect by Jan. 1, 2014, and include the Take Care of Your Health initiative.